Roberto Firmino’s fitness levels when he arrived in Germany from Brazil were literally abysmal, according to Hoffenheim’s former sporting director Ernst Tanner.
Tanner has given a pretty funny interview in which he’s described the physical test results Bobby delivered as a teenager!
Now, Firmino is regarded as one of the fittest, most bullish, hardest-working footballers on the planet – but this has clearly taken some work…
“You should have seen the data that we got on him when he was coming for the first time [to Hoffenheim],” he told Bleacher Report.
“In Germany, we usually do these endurance tests, blood ones, which are pretty accurate, you know, and he had the worst numbers I have ever seen in professional football.
“I would say to emphasise that he was even worse than my grandma. You can’t imagine.
“They were so low that you couldn’t even believe that he was ever able to play professional football.”
Hoffenheim snapped Firmino up on 2011, and at the time, it seemed a gamble – but Bobby eventually began to prove his genius in the Bundesliga.
In the two seasons before we signed him, the Brazilian bagged 32 goals from attacking midfield, which convinced the Reds to sign him in 2015.
Firmino is regarded as an iconic Jurgen Klopp player – but it was actually Brendan Rodgers who was in charge when he first arrived on Merseyside.
Rodgers didn’t know how to use him though, and it wasn’t until Klopp integrated him into the side that he started to fulfil his true potential.
And we’re mighty, mighty glad he did!
Today, Firmino forms one third of maybe the world’s best strike-force.